The way we design for and build our communities affects both our physical and mental health. At R&R, our specialty is focusing on how to help communities market their amenities more effectively through beautiful designs and strategic outreach. From our experience, the areas that thrive tend to be the ones that create vibrant places where families want to live and companies want to do business. An effective campaign can both raise awareness and reinvigorate interest in a community’s unique features. Read on to learn about some of our favorite amenities that promote healthy living and how local leaders can encourage community use.
Biking and walking paths
Biking is a more economic (not to mention fun!) alternative transportation option for many members in your community. When communities have plenty of walkable sidewalks and bike-friendly routes for kids to take to school, students and their parents are more active. When people can walk where they need to go, car traffic decreases, and that can improve air quality and respiratory health. Ensure your residents know where to find cycle-friendly zones via proper signage — or even create a snazzy communication effort, such as an animated city tour similar to how we helped our friends in Oregon City, Oregon showcase their hometown! With a little inspiration, beautiful days in the neighborhood become outings of exercise rather than a day-date with the T.V.
Not only do rec centers provide an obvious space for patrons to get their blood pumping rain or shine, they are also an epicenter for social interaction. When your community and guests see their neighbors taking the time to improve their quality of life, the pride in their neighborhood will then translate over into other aspect of the community. Having a positive relationship with your neighbors through a friendly game of basketball or after chatting while on adjacent treadmills allows people to feel like they know and want to take care of their community. Take advantage of a little healthy competition and bring the community together by hosting a family fitness fun day or weekend warrior sports tournament. Make sure the community at large is up-to-date with the latest neighborhood activities through sleek and easy-to-read eblasts and itineraries, events and web pages like those we’ve designed for Cedar Park, Texas, all of which are equal parts inviting and exciting.
Open and green spaces
If your community prefers to spike their heart rate alfresco, simple and open green spaces are time-tested remedies for cabin fever. Whether it’s joining in on a friendly game of touch football, walking the furry family members along trails or simply lying in the grass soaking in the sun, open green spaces are a blank canvas for people to create their own style of fun. Using these spaces for community wide events are a bonus that is hard to pass up! Find a creative way to showcase all of the outdoor opportunities your town has to offer like our friends at Texas Hill Country did with their passport brochure so no one looking for a fun time misses a thing! Fresh air and a little vitamin D are the perfect recipe for a healthy community.
Healthy people, physically and mentally, are more likely to complete an education, find employment and give back to the community around them. In other words, healthy community design enables us to live the lives we want to live.